I’m here again in a body and find myself speaking a different tongue. There is a woman behind me; I don’t think I know her. My derealised mind comes to a halt. I’m speaking. This time it’s actually me speaking. “And here the boy looks at the girl wearing a blue kaftan. She is so beautiful, and yet I must kill her.” My mind drifts apart from my body. The body speaks, and I see the lips moving, yet I don’t hear anything. I thought to myself, what am I doing? They say, “the sick mind makes up stories.” “Who said that?” I thought to myself, if they haven’t, they should. And here I was, my body making up stories, and whatever I am, I felt like I was floating.
I suddenly realised I was in a bed, I looked around, and it seemed familiar. But what is this place? Coal was burning, and I looked around and around for a clue. I saw a painting. It was mine. I painted it when I was in grade 6. “Where am I?” I said out loud. But no one was hearing me. I tried to move but I couldn’t. I was stuck under this blanket, and I saw myself walking in. I was 12. I had a bat over my shoulder, and I sat down fuming. This was the day we lost the match. I squealed, figuring it out but unlike the last time. I felt he could hear me; I could hear me. He was coming to where I was, and I felt a pull on my leg. I looked down,
I was in a different place. A field and a little were tugging at my pants. I felt the body I was in, kneeling, but I was standing still. It was like before I had left the body. Where was I? I looked at them, and they looked like my grandpa and my mom. Where was I? And suddenly I felt like I had fallen. I fell a good distance before I stopped and found myself in another bed. I couldn’t move. The bed was archaic, the walls were old and damp, and I thought, was this another memory. Was I hopping from memory to memory? And a chilling thought came to me,
“Was I dying?”
“Is this what death feels like?”
And then I remembered, don’t people always say that you see all your memories right before you die. And then a cloud came in, so much cemetery, so much passion and then the realisation, that’s mom and dad. Oh God, how I had missed them. I wanted to shout their names, I wanted to look at them, but I couldn’t move, and I couldn’t shout. And then there was a poke on my side, and I looked right.
It was an old man, and my suspension grew. I was dying. This was me; everything before now was simply a mirage. Then tubes started coming out of his mouth and hands. It looked like he was in, and an ICU formed right in front of my eyes. Brick by brick. But another epiphany, there weren’t even my memories so, was I just making up stories like a sick mind does. But I couldn’t remember myself. My past. I could only feel this, and then I saw a door appear in front of me. I kept at that, but it wouldn’t move. And then I heard banging on the other side. Someone was screaming, “Help, help!” I remembered it was the voice of my wife. I had a wife.
The door flung open. I stepped inside. I was in front of a restaurant. I remembered this was where I had my first date with my wife. I recall that I was waiting for her. So, I waited for what felt like a second, and here she was, as beautiful as I remembered. My wife is in her younger years. Oh, how beautiful she looked, and I remember I loved her, I love her now.
And we are in a movie theatre, her first movie. She is coming for a kiss. Oh God, how I wish I could kiss her now. And I’m at her wedding, she is there as beautiful as ever, and beside her it’s me. I couldn’t believe my eyes. For a second, I was scared it was someone else.
Then in a hospital, the birth of our firstborn, and now our house, we are singing, we are dancing. When she sings coffee, I find that the most beautiful thing ever. And then her ceremony, she had died. All my prayers, all the years and nothing.
Suddenly a room appeared in front of me. I was lifted from the ground; I was floating, but it wasn’t in my control. They left me on a bed. I was on my right, and behind me, there was that woman. It was my partner, the love of my life, and I held her hand. I almost snatched it. She looked at me, amazed. I could move this time. So, I kissed her. I kissed her cheek and her forehead. And I whispered in her ears, “I love you.”
She whispered something back. I could hardly make out that she said, I love you too. It felt as if she was talking from underwater, and then we drifted apart. Blacks appeared from the sides of my eyes, and I was drifting apart. I found myself in the darkness, with nothing but my thoughts, and then slowly, my thoughts drifted apart, and there was nothing but black.
And suddenly, lightning struck. There was light everywhere. I was in a kaleidoscope, and the lights almost blinded me. I opened my eyes. Beside me was the woman I loved, holding my hands. And in a dry tone, I told her, “I died,” and she hugged me tightly and told me, “You have a fever, silly. You won’t die.” So, I kissed her again, on her cheeks and her forehead.
I looked at her, “I love you.” She turned around to face me fully.
“I love you too, my darling.”